He was a professor of philosophy, widely published, highly regarded; she was dead. He was, based on his publications, his papers covering a wide range of philosophical, scientific and medical issues, not to mention the arts, considered to be a polymath. She was still dead, her body being opened up and subjected to an undignified examination by a telegenic police forensic team while a very impatient telegenic Detective Inspector Sean Bennett paced up and down past the viewing window screaming, “Something I can work with. A clue, maybe!” while his partner, the telegenic Detective Samantha Darling, placed her hand on her belly contemplating the prospect of being an unmarried mother and wondering who to tell and when.
Later on, seated in an old but comfortable Roma leather armchair in Professor Parfitt’s telegenic college chambers, DI Bennett rubbed his forehead and scowled. The professor had answered all his questions without hesitation and there was no doubt that the man was lying through his untelegenic academic teeth and that his water tight alibi was as leaky as a sieve, but he just couldn’t prove anything.
“Are you readers, Inspector, Detective?” asked the professor, waving his tweed jacketed arm at the telegenic floor-to-ceiling bookshelves on every wall. “Books, you know, the answer to everything. If you are ever looking for the truth, you’ll find it in books.”
“Fiction,” offered DI Bennett.
“Romance,” tendered Detective Darling.
“I’m partial to murder stories,” said the professor. “Read ‘em all, and watch ‘em all on the telly. Miss Marple, Poirot, Columbo. Frost and Morse, of course. Read ‘em, watch ‘em, study ‘em. Could do a PhD on ‘em.”
On the way back to the station, Detective Darling muttered, “He knows all the tricks, guv’nor, all the scams. No way we can nail him.”
DI Bennett worked some gum around with his tongue, squeezed the bridge of his nose and said, “Bugger. Time for a pint.”